tv MSNBC News Live MSNBC March 18, 2010 11:00am-12:00pm EDT
bill will cost. and jihad jane, a hearing under way right now for the american woman accused of working with terrorists overseas. and elizabeth edwards reacts to that explosive magazine interview where her husband's former mistress is asked questions. and they're asking, is it a case of the oscar curse? new reports this morning that actress sandra bullock has moved out of her home amid reports that her marriage on the rocks with her husband, jesse james. they say it's in trouble. and democratic house leaders say they are on schedule for a sunday vote on health care reform. here's democratic whip congressman james clyburn just this morning. >> we are absolutely giddy over the great news that we've gotten from the cbo. >> nbc's political unit has learned democrats are just five votes shy of reaching that 216. if no republicans vote for the
bill, democrats can lose only 37 of their members. and according to the blog fire dog, democrats in their estimates have 190 yes votes. let's talk to nbc's luke russert. heese on capitol hill. luke, before we talk about the numbers game, let's talk about the cbo report and what we learned today. >> reporter: democrats needed to find out exactly how much the bill costs. they now have that information. it comes in at over $940 billion. some very interesting things within this bill as to why it is going to reduce the deficit over the period of ten years by $130 billion. and then the next ten years, $1.2 trillion. those are huge numbers. they're extremely important to fiscal conservative democrats. what else is in this bill? it also covers 95% of americans and adds 32 million more people to the rolls of health insurance. so what can they do now? they can go to the liberal
members and say, look, we cover 95%. 32 million new folks. they go to the fiscally conservative democrats and say look at the deficit reduction we're going to accomplish with this health care bill. they've taken care of the liberals and the fiscal conservatives. so what's left? it's these abortion democrats, these pro-life democrats. huge news coming yesterday. dale kildy from michigan who trained to be a catholic priest for six years and was close to bart stupak saying he's okay with the senate language. it seems democrats are getting closer to that magic 216 number. the wheels are certainly moving towards it. president obama slated to leave 10:00 a.m. sunday morning. the vote could come at noon. maybe this white house is going to delay that plane ride to asia. >> luke, and you mentioned congressman stupak. here's what else he had to say this morning. >> you get cussed out wherever you go. unfortunately for my wife, she's got to unplug her phone at night
because you get calls at 2:00, 3:00 in the morning and they're not asking about my position. they want to cuss you out. she can't even do that. my staff is overwhelmed, and we're accosted basically wherever we go by people who disagree. >> luke, talk to us about the pressure. mr. stupak said his life is a living hell or this is a living nightmare. >> reporter: it's unbelievable. you have to understand a lot of these members on the fence are rank-and-file democrats, not very well known. you have a guy like bart stupak getting calls all hours of the night, people standing outside his office waiting to talk to him, people from the left and right, both calling nonstop. a guy from ohio, john basari, front page of "the washington post" calling about how he's never been so inundated with calls and arm. twisting. it's going to come down to democrats. five on the fence right now. from now till sunday, you'd better belief they are going to hear from everybody from all over the political spectrum who has a stake in this health care game. it's going to be amazing. >> it is amazing.
thank you very much, luke. coming up later in the hour, we'll talk with democratic congressman david wu of oregon. he's not clear how he will vote on health care reform bill, so we'll talk to him live and get his thoughts and find out where he stands. and while the democrats have some new momentum on health care reform, the state of virginia intends to sue the federal government if the democrats try to pass the bill by using indirect vote, what we've been talking about is deem and pass. kenneth kucinelli is the attorney general. kenneth, thanks for joining us. >> my pleasure. >> you wrote a letter to speaker pelosi. what did you say to her in that letter? >> basically, what we said was if the bill that was addressed by whatever vote means they address it in the house isn't the same bill word for word as the senate than using this deem and pass process. that would violate article 1, section 7, of the constitution. and wouit would give us what fo
this bill is an additional constitutional problem for the bill. they need to vote on the language that the senate passed in order to comply with article 1, section 7. and that's all we told her. >> kenneth, deem and pass has been used before. it's been used by republicans. it's not new. it may be new in this conversation. but it is not a new tactic. have you been opposed to this procedure all along? >> frankly, this -- i've not been attorney general since it has been used, and this is the first time since i took office. but the key element here, consistent with the supreme court, for instance, in the clinton case in '98 is that the language would be the same. they can do a number of procedural things to vote on it in ways that might be different than usual. but ultimately the record has to reflect that the members of the house are voting on the same language, even if they vote on something else at the same time, perhaps, that's an angle that we hear batted around. as the senate bill.
>> did you hear back from the speaker's office? >> no, not yet. this only went out yesterday, and i don't know that we will. she's, i've noticed, rather busy these days. >> thankfully they are busy doing the people's work. do you really think you're going to hear back, and is this a waste perhaps of taxpayers' dollars in your state if you feel that you're not going to get anywhere, really, with this? could you hold a press conference and say you're going to do this rather than maybe tying up money with lawsuits? >> well, the fact of the matter is, my first obligation is to defend the constitutions of the united states and virginia. and a lot of people don't care about that anymore, but i do. and if they're going to step ahead and violate the clear text of the constitution, i have an obligation to do something about that. and rather than sandbag them after the fact, as we have with the individual mandate, we are letting our congressional delegation in virginia and the speaker know of where our constitutional concerns lie so that if they choose to, they can address those concerns on the front end and avoid the
potential for a constitutional conflict. but if they ignore those constitutional requirements, we're not going to ignore them in virginia. we're going to defend the text of the constitution. >> kenneth cuccinelli, attorney general. thank you very much, kenneth. and the pennsylvania woman who calls herself jihad jane just appeared in court in philadelphia. colleen larose pleaded guilty. nbc's michelle franzen is live in the courthouse in philadelphia. michelle, there was a report that colleen larose confessed when she was arrested. what else do we know about at least what she's telling authorities? >> reporter: yeah. we certainly don't know those details yet, tamron. and there are reports that she may have been working over the past six months with the fbi. and that could have been why the fbi kept her case secret so they could make the arrests last week. this hearing here in philadelphia took all of five minutes in federal court here. colleen larose pleading not
guilty to four counts including conspiracy to provide information to terrorists in a plot to kill, of course, authorities say she was involved in a conspiracy in that plot to kill a swedish cartoonist for his caricature of the prophet muhammed and also along with the other counts, making false statements and attempted identity theft. colleen larose walked in in a green jumpsuit, her hair in cornrow braids and certainly did not waste any time entering her plea of not guilty. some of those details we don't know if any more details of her indictment will come out. the fbi and the u.s. attorney's office has been very secretive of the details in her indictment that was just unsealed last week. tamron? >> michelle, thank you very much. also developing news out of florida, we've got some live pictures of the hearing involving casey anthony. and it is scheduled to begin any moment. you see her in court kind of making a strange face. the 23-year-old is charged with first-degree murder in the death
of her 2-year-old daughter, caylee. nbc's kerry sanders is live in orlando. kerry, she says that she doesn't have any money, and she needs an attorney from the state now, i understand. >> reporter: well, there's some very interesting issues that are developing here today. one, is she indigent? she, of course, was unemployed when her daughter went missing. she's been unemployed during the period they were searching for her daughter, and she is, of course, been in jail, had no income. so it's been sort of curious that somehow she's been able to afford more than $110,000 that has been paid to her legal team including a very high-profile, very successful attorney from chicago, andrea lyon, as well as her local attorney, jose baez. they've just announced here this morning that another attorney, cheney mason, has joined the team. he's also a very prominent, local, high-profile attorney. and so she has no money, she claims, and she's asking the judge today if the state can
pay. and you can imagine in this community where this trial and the developments leading up to what will be next year's prosecution. this has not gone over well with people. it will be three years before it goes to trial. also revealed this morning is that the investigators have 50 messages passed by casey to another inmate in jail. they say these are not confessional messages, but they're messages of some note that they are now using for their investigation. the details of those messages not yet released. tamron? >> kerry, thank you very much for the latest live out of that hearing. and authorities in washington state say several items have washed ashore following the disappearance of an 8-year-old boy and his mom. police say the items were located on puget sound beach, the same area where 29-year-old chantina smiley's abandoned van was found earlier this week. police say the items include two
mismatched leather shoes, a halful wine bottle and an inhaler. her and her son failed to show up at relatives' home last saturday. and residents along the rising red river in fargo, north dakota, are crossing their fingers after stacking so many sandbags to protect their homes. >> i don't want to do this again. >> well, the river has already risen about 30 feet, and it is threatening to flood not only fargo but nearby moorhead, minnesota, as well. nbc's kevin tibbles is live in fargo. your heart has to go out to people like that woman who says she doesn't know if she can do this again after what we saw last year with the record flooding. >> reporter: yeah, absolutely, tamron. you know, they have made 1 million sandbags. and they've all been deployed along the river. i'm standing actually on the moorhead side. that's fargo behind me. you can see the rising waters of the red river. as you mentioned, no one wants
to see it get to the flood stage of last year which was a record 40 feet. they are hoping, by the time that it crests on sunday, that it's not going to get up there. but, of course, people here are very used to this happening in the springtime. this year, in particular, they had so much snow on the plains states during the wintertime, and then all of a sudden we've had a very mild march. everything is melting. and as you can see behind me, everything is coming down the river. and, of course, it creates that sort of perfect storm, if i can use a phrase like that, with regards to people who live on the banks of the red river. now, they're not only fighting it with sandbags, but i'm going to have the cameraman pan off to the side which is where we're deploying the new aqua fence which is also something they're using to hold the water back. it's obviously much easier to get in place. it's portable. it's light. it's made out of plastic. the water can't get through it. and as you can see, it doesn't take hundreds and hundreds of high school kids carrying 30-pound bags of sand to make this sort of fence. they are getting all of the
defenses out in anticipation of this red river crest that's going to happen sometime on sunday. tamron, back to you. >> kevin, thank you very much. and al qaeda on the run? what the head of the cia says the u.s. is making dramatic gains in the war on terror. but is it risky to give that kind of information out? we are live at the pentagon. so the notion -- >> you guarantee that they're going to be able to keep their doctor? >> brett, you've got to let me finish. >> a testy exchange. the president sits down for a rare interview with fox news. did he get the better end of the deal? and elizabeth edwards weighs in on the photo spread and the interview with her soon-to-be ex-husband's former mistress, rielle hunter.
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rose garden just behind me. president obama is expected to sign into law the jobs bill that was passed in the senate. the $17.6 billion package intended to spur hiring, giving tax cuts to some of those out there who are able to hire and give tax credit to businesses who are able to keep on new employees for at least 52 weeks. so the president going to sign that jobs bill that was passed by the senate in a vote of 68-29 on wednesday. we'll bring the president to you as soon as he steps up there. meantime, speaking of the president, tried to sell his health care reform wednesday on a news channel that the administration has openly criticized. former white house communications director anita dunn accused fox news of being, quote, a wing of the republican party. well, here's part of the interview where the president tried to focus on the substance on his policies instead of the latest details from capitol hill. >> i don't spend a lot of time worrying about what the procedural rules are in the house or the senate. if people vote yes, whatever
form that takes, that is going to be a vote for health care reform. and i don't think we should presepr pretend otherwise. >> mr. president -- >> let me finish. if they vote against it, then they're going to be voting against health care reform, and they'll be voting in favor of the status quo. >> let's talk to mike viqueira. we're seeing the democratic leadership coming out, waiting on the president. but there was a rare interview. did the white house consider that a success, what we were watching there? >> reporter: you know, i think that's going to be one of the first questions to robert gibbs. incident incidentally, he'll have class outside today. a beautiful day here in washington. you're right, we see all the signs that the president's appearance sim nent, but wow, what a contentious interview on fox news last night. the interview wanted to hit on the process, asked a lot of questions, said fox news had received 18,000 e-mails. he asked a couple of them having to do with the so-called deem and pass in the house where house members won't have to vote directly on the senate bill that's so contentious, that even
democrats dislike to such a degree they wouldn't vote for it otherwise. the reconciliation process where 51 votes only are needed in the senate. and the president, of course, wanted to stick with the issues, hit the bullet points on preexisting conditions and insurance reforms, things of that nature. it actually got quite contentious. for a moment it appeared the president was off his game a little bit. but in the end i think that the white house probably wants to get that demographic in these swing districts where some 30 democrats are on the fence. these conservative-leaning districts where john mccain beat barack obama in the last presidential race, reach out to them as well. conventional wisdom among communicators on both sides of the aisle here, especially the democratic side in this case is, you can't just ignore an entire segment of the population. you can't just assume it's monolithic in how they're going to vote. you have to assume there are people on the fence that could make a difference as we head into the crunch days, these last 72 hours, before that vote in the house. >> mike, we see the president now. we'll put you on hold.
you see the president greeting his leadership there. this jobs bill passed in the senate yesterday. significant help, some believe -- i'll let you talk to me about it while the president shakes hands and greets the audience there. this bill is supposed to help companies or businesses that are willing to hire and also help those willing to keep new employees on for 52 weeks. >> morning, everybody. please have a seat. on this beautiful morning, we are here to mark the passage of a welcome piece of legislation for our fellow americans who are seeking work in this difficult economy. but first let me say a few words about the latest development in the debate over health insurance reform. i don't know if you guys have been hearing, but there's been a big debate going on here. this morning a new analysis from the congressional budget office concludes that the reform we seek would bring $1.3 trillion in deficit reduction over the
next two decades. that makes this legislation the most significant effort to reduce deficit since the balanced budget act in the 1990s. and this is -- this is but one virtue of a reform that will bring new accountability to the insurance industry and greater economic security to all americans. so i urge every member of congress to consider this as they prepare for their important vote this weekend. i want to welcome all the members of congress who are here, those who are on stage, madam speaker, majority leader reid as well as some of my cabinet members who are here. in a few moments i'll sign what's called the hire act. a jobs bill that will encourage businesses to hire and help put americans back to work. i'd like to say a few words about what this jobs bill will
mean for workers, for businesses and for america's economic recovery. there are a number of ways to look at an economic recovery, through the eyes of an economist, you look at the different stages of recovery. you look at whether an economy has begun to grow, at whether businesses have begun to hire temporary workers or increase the hours of existing workers. you look at whether businesses, small and large, have begun to hire full-time employees again. that's how economists measure a recovery. and by those measures, we are beginning to move in the right direction. but through the eyes of most americans, recovery is about something more fundamental. do i have a decent job? can i provide for my family? do i feel a sense of financial security? the great recession that we've just gone through took a terrible toll on the middle class and on our economy as a
whole. for every one of the over 8 million people who lost their jobs in recent years, there's a story of struggle of a family that's forced to choose between paying their electricity bill or the car insurance or the daughter's college tuition, of weddings and vacations and retirements that have been postponed. so here's the good news. a consensus is forming that partly because of the necessary and often unpopular measures we took over the past year, our economy is now growing again. and we may soon be adding jobs instead of losing them. the jobs bill i'm signing today is intended to help accelerate that process. i'm signing it, mindful that, as i've said before, the solution to our economic problems will not come from government alone. government can't create all the jobs we need nor can it repair all the damage that's been done by this recession.
but what we can do is promote a strong dynamic private sector. the true engine of job creation in our economy. we can help to provide an impetus for america's businesses to start hiring again. we can nur tu the conditions that allow companies to succeed and to grow. and that's exactly what this jobs bill will help us do. make no mistake, while this jobs bill is absolutely necessary, it's by no means enough. there's a lot more that we're going to need to do to spur hiring in the private sector and bring about full economic recovery from helping credit-worthy small businesses to get loans, that they need to expand to offering incentives to make homes and businesses more energy efficient, to investing in infrastructure so we can put americans to work doing the work that america needs done. nevertheless, this jobs bill will make a difference in several important ways. first, we will forgive payroll taxes for businesses that hire
someone who's been out of work at least two months. that's a tax benefit that will apply to unemployed workers hired between last month and the end of this year. so this tax cut says to employers, if you hire a worker who's unemployed, you won't have to pay payroll taxes on that worker for the rest of the year. and businesses that move quickly to hire today will get a bigger tax credit than businesses that wait until later this year. this tax cut will be particularly helpful to small business owners. many of them are on the fence right now about whether to bring in that extra worker or two. or whether they should hire anyone at all. and this jobs bill should help make their decision that much easier. and by the way, i'd like to note that part of what health insurance reform would do is to provide tax credits for over 4 million small businesses so they don't have to choose between hiring workers and offering coverage. the second thing is bill does is to encourage small businesses to grow and to hire by permitting
them to write off investments they make in equipment this year. these kinds of expenses typically take years to depreciate. but under this law, businesses will be able to invest up to $250,000. let's say in a piece of factory equipment and write it off right away. put simply, it will give businesses an incentive to invest in their own future and to do it today. third, we'll reform municipal bonds to encourage job creation by expanding investment in schools and clean energy projects. say a town wants to put people to work rebuilding a crumbling elementary school or putting up wind turbines. with this law, we'll make it easier for them to raise the money they need to do what they want to do by using a model that we've called build america bonds. one of the most successful programs in the recovery act. it will give americans a better chance to invest in the future, their communities and of the country. and finally, this jobs bill will
maintain crucial investments in our roads, in our bridges as we head into the spring and summer months when construction jobs are picking up. i want to commend all the members of congress and their leadership is what made this bill possible. many of them are here today. i'm also gratified that over a dozen republicans agreed that the need for this jobs bill was urgent and that they were willing to break out of the partisan morass to help us take this forward step for the american people. i hope this is a prelude to further cooperation in the days and months to come as we continue to work on digging our way out of the recession and rebuilding our economy in a way that works for all americans and not just some americans. after all, the jobs bill i'm signing today and our broader efforts to achieve a recovery aren't about politics. they're not about democrat versus republican. this isn't a game that we're playing here. they're about the people in this country who are out of work and
looking for a job. they're about all the americans of every race and region and age who shared their stories with me over the last year. a single mother has told me she's filled out hundreds of job applications and been on dozens of interviews but still hasn't found a job. the father whose son told me he started working when he was a teenager and recently found himself out of a job for the very first time in his life. the children who write to me. and they're worried about their moms and their dads, worried about what the future holds for their families. that's who i'm thinking about every morning when i enter into the oval office. that's who i'm signing this bill for. and that's who i'm going to continue to fight for so long as i am president of the united states. so with that, let me sign this bill, and let's get to work.
>> there you have it, president obama signing this bipartisan jobs bill, $17.6 billion package that certainly his administration hopes will encourage small businesses to hire new workers and also give them the confidence as the president said to, for example, buy equipment that is needed. but we do note that at the top of his remarks, the president talking about the cbo report coming in just this morning on the health care reform. mike viqueira still with me. mike, interesting, yes, the president saying he's proud of this jobs bill, but he really hit that note off the top about the cbo report out this morning on health care. >> reporter: right. and interesting to note he's getting to the issue now in the middle of this desperate legislative struggle over the health care bill playing out over the next three days and into the weekend, getting to the issue that some democrats that wish he had gotten too much earlier in his term, and that is the issue of jobs and the unemployment rate still hovering between 9% and 10%.
the president speaking hopefully of the fact that the stimulus, as it still comes online here, as this bill he signs, encouraging employers to hire those who are unemployed, giving those businesses tax breaks until the end of the year. this is more pump than priming that he thinks can accelerate the recovery. you're right, this is the one thing democrats want to emphasize this morning as we get the preliminary look at those cbo numbers. let's be very careful here because we have not seen the official numbers directly from the cbo yet. we're getting these via the democratic leadership. of course, weyfñ can trust theye not trying to lead us astray, but the one thing that they're emphasizing here is the deficit reduction, $1.3 trillion according to their figures which they're getting from the cbo, deficit reduction over the next two decades, tamron. >> great point to note because that would be some story, wouldn't it, mike? misleading us. all right, thank you very much. well, there's a new, upbeat assessment in the war on terror, and it comes from cia director leon panetta. he tells "the washington post"
that al qaeda is, quote, scrambling and in disarray. he credits the success to recent military strikes happening in pakistan. jim miklaszewski joins us live from the pentagon. what's been the reaction to this statement? >> tamron, this is about as upbeat as you'll hear a director of central intelligence in terms of al qaeda. the director, leon panetta, told "the washington post" that al qaeda is on the run, that there's been extraordinary success recently in a very aggressive campaign to take out taliban and al qaeda leadership in western pakistan. and he even had the very extraordinary disclosure that the cia had intercepted a message from al qaeda lieutenants to the leader, osama bin laden, pleading with bin laden to show some leadership, a strong indication that al qaeda is in disarray. but counterterrorism officials are saying, look. be cautious here despite the extraordinary gains that have
been made, al qaeda remains resilient. they still have the ability to launch some limited attacks like that attempt, for example, on christmas day when the suicide bomber attempted to blow up a plane landing in detroit. it didn't happen, fortunately. but that's the kind of operations that intelligence officials believe al qaeda can still carry out and that al qaeda still remains a serious threat. tamron? >> all right, mik, thank you very much. also, another story we're following, elizabeth edwards is reacting to the provocative photos and "gq" magazine interview with rielle hunter. elizabeth and john have been separated since january. "people" reports elizabeth was just beginning to move on with her life had she read the explosive interview with hunter. we have details from nbc's norah o'donnell. >> reporter: the pictures left little to the imagination. john edwards' former mistress, rielle hunter, the mother of their 2-year-old daughter,
telling "gq" magazine that "i love johnny and i love my daughter more than anything in the world." and aiming her fire at elizabeth edwards saying the wrath of elizabeth is a mighty wrath. but now the new issue of "people" magazine quotes especially regarding hunter's claims that the edwardses' marriage was broken long before she became the other woman. whatever she thinks she knows about the marriage she received secondhand. it was not a broken marriage. "people" quotes friends of elizabeth saying she was disgusted by the racy photos of rielle posing with her daughter's toys, but that after reading the interview monday morning, she still went about her day as usual. stopping by the furniture store she now runs in chapel hill, north carolina, and taking her two youngest children to a soccer game. for her part, hunter told barbara walters she herself found the pictures repulsive.
>> well, if that was the case, then why did you pose the way you did? she said that she trusted mark sulliger who she said is a brilliant photographer and she, quote, i went with the flow. >> reporter: as for hunter's claims to "gq" magazine about edwards that we love each other very much, "people" quotes an edwards calling that a total fantasy. "people" also reports that john edwards and hunter talk on the phone about 2-year-old frances quinn but do not see each other in person. >> thank you all very much. >> thank y'all. >> reporter: as for john and elizabeth edwards, "people" reports that john has moved out of their chapel hill mansion and that the two have cordial relations. >> that was nbc's norah o'donnell reporting. and she recently won the academy award for best actress, but is sandra bullock going from emotional high to an emotional low? let's get the scoop now from msnbc.com pop culture columnist courtney hazelet.
she's been the princess of the entertainment world and now disturbing news about her personal life. >> disturbing news about her personal life. it gets worse and worse. it appears she's moved out of the home she shared with jesse james in california. that comes from "people" magazine. she moved out on monday before this news broke. >> which the news, to catch people up? >> in case you missed it, jesse james allegedly having an affair with a woman who was -- >> had an affair. >> had an affair with a woman who was a tattoo model. she has a large tattoo across her forehead, just to give you a quick visual, that says "pray for us sinners," to be exact. it just really, really sad story. sandra bullock was supposed to appear at the premiere of her film "the blind side" in london. she pulled out of that, citing personal reasons. she hasn't spoken out about this directly yet. but given just how devoted she was to him, she talked about him during her acceptance speeches during all of the awards season and she was close to his daughter as well. they were fighting for custody of her. an incredibly sad story.
>> is this a tiger woods' type of story, e-mails, text messages that prove this woman had this affair? >> the woman has said she's not thinking about releasing those sorts of things. she gave an interview to "in touch weekly" you have to think there's more of that where that came from. more of tiger woods' text me messages have come out just in the last hour. i was going to say, can we cheer it up? conan o'brien, we know he's not allowed on television until the fall. word is the hollywood reporter, he's in talks with fox. they presented him with an outline of the show. it would be substantially pared down than what it was on nbc just because of budget reasons. but you know what? it works really well for craig ferguson. >> craig ferguson's genius. >> it could be a fantastic move to pare it down and just show your comedy chops. craig ferguson invited the
audience a few weeks ago. he's fantastic. you could definitely take a page from his playbook. what fox is saying the holdup is or sources close to fox talking to people is they have to get the affiliates to make time for him. it's one thing to create a television show, but if you have no time for it in the lineup, it's all a moot point. that's all still developing. also, "24" -- >> i hear it's amazing. i've never had a chance to see it. >> it's in its, i believe, ninth season. >> so identify got time to catch up? >> he's had nine bad days in a row. you've got time to catch up. lots of rumors this is its final season as well. there's a rumor that nbc could pick it up. >> oh. >> yeah, that would be great. it's currently on fox. >> are they back taping? because wasn't he ill, kiefer sutherland? >> exactly. they're back, everything's fine. that's not why the move would take place. a lot of people are thinking they want to leave fox so they can do a big movie. we've seen that happen before as well. a lot up in the air with that. but at the end of the day, i think the net-net is that jack
bauer isn't totally leaving us yet. >> could see him on nbc. >> you've got time to catch up. >> see you at 2:00 for the latest entertainment news. meantime, go to scoop.msnbc.com for more entertainment news. courtney's back with me in our 2:00 p.m. eastern show. and there are things considered news in this world, but there are a few stories that make us say -- >> no way! >> so vice president joe biden had quite a st. patrick's day. at a white house ceremony for the visiting irish prime minister, brian cohen, mr. biden made a cringe-worthy comment about the prime minister's mom. take a listen. >> his mom lived in long island for ten years or so, god rest her soul, and -- although, wait, your mom's still -- your mom's still alive. it was your dad that passed. god bless her soul. i've got to get this straight. >> well, you see it there, the prime minister acknowledged the gaffe with a nod and he was able
to even find laughter there in what was really an awkward moment. and moving on, in texas, police say -- this is crazy -- a man fired from an auto dealership used an internet service to remotely set off car alarms on more than 100 vehicles sold at his old job. so the car alarms were going off. the horns in the vehicles were going off. investigators say he also disabled the ignitions of those cars. many of the car owners say they had to call tow trucks or left stranded. austin police arrested him, and he's been charged. and racist announcement. someone got on the loudspeaker and made an offensive remark regarding african-american shoppers at a walmart store. what walmart is saying now about it. i own a small law firm and i'm a much better lawyer than i am an accountant. so, when i wasn't getting paid as quickly as i would like, i did what came naturally. i threatened to sue.
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store. shoppers were in the store sunday when someone got on the loudspeaker and said, quote, attention walmart shoppers. will all the black people please leave the store. thank you. five minutes passed before management made an announcement apologizing for the remarks. shoppers, of course, say they were appalled by it. walmart is cooperating with investigators to find out exactly who was behind this. inches and the sex abuse scandal shaking the catholic church in ireland, the netherlands and germany, is focusing more attention squarely on the vatican and the pope. some 18 dioceses in germany have been implicated in the scandal including munich where pope benedict served as archbishop. the vatican denies the pope was involved in any wrongdoing. they plan to issue a letter to the people of ireland addressing the scandals this week. nbc's stephanie gosk is in rome with the very latest. stephan stephanie, obviously, some people are upset that ireland is the focus in this letter but not what's happening in the news in germany. >> reporter: that's right,
tamron. people in germany are clamoring to hear what the pope has to say, and essentially the allegation against him is that he was the head of the diocese in munich. in 1980 when a priest that had been accused of sexual abuse was transferred to munich for treatment. that priest was then put back in a parish, and he continued to abuse children. and people in germany want to know what role the pope played in that. now, the vatican has said unequivocally that that was not the pope's decision at the time cardinal joseph ratzinger to put this priest back in a parish. now, all of this comes as there has been a flare-up of allegations in europe on the vatican's doorstep of priest abuse of children. of course, the incident in ireland, there were three investigations that ireland conducted that ended up resulting in 15,000 allegations over the period of four decades. most recently yesterday, the head of the irish church having to come out and apologize for
his role in an incident in 1975 where a priest that had been accused of sexual abuse as well, he sat there as two of his proposed victims swore an oath of silence. and then that priest went on to abuse more children. so it really has flared up here, and people are waiting to hear what the vatican has to say. tamron? >> all right, stephanie, thank you very much. now back to the fight over health care reform. the democratic leadership expressing new optimism and confidence that they will have the votes on sunday to pass the bill. nbc news political unit says democrats are just five votes shy of the 216 they need. and some democrats have still not declared how they will vote. with me now, democratic congressman, david wu of oregon. thank you, congressman, for joining us. >> good to be with you. >> so which will will you go in this vote if it happens on sunday? >> i'm leaning very strongly in favor of this bill, but i do want to, you know, the final legislation just came out today.
the score came out today. so i want to look at that closely. >> what are you looking for? >> you know, i've listened to oregonians closely over the last year, and folks don't want a bureaucracy running through this. that's why it's running through private insurance. i want to make sure that's there. folks don't want preexisting conditions to disqualify them from insurance, getting insurance. and i want to make sure that that is there. i want to make sure that we have at least the beginning of some cost control measures so that we can begin to decrease the rate of increase of health care costs. these are very, very important pieces of the legislation. and we have to confirm that they're there. >> okay. i mean, for example, the preexisting issue, i mean, wouldn't you know that that is there? i mean, that might be confusing to people to hear because the president is saying that that's a key part of the legislation. >> look, it's as president reagan said, trust but verify, okay? >> so does that mean you have doubts about those within your party? you have some doubts about what
the president is saying and what your leadership is saying? >> no, look. if i wanted to say that, i know how to say that. but, you know, this is a very, very serious responsibility. quite frankly, tamron, you know, someday we're going to look back at this 50 years from now, folks will look back and say what was the hubbub about? because i think it will stand beside social security or medicare or the g.i. bill as a mile post between progress and humane values. we want to dot the is and dot the ts because this is very important to the american people. >> let me ask you, do you believe that the bill will pass? i mean, if the vote is sunday, do you believe it will pass? >> this was said eight years ago when there was a different majority and a different president. it's very, very hard to bet against the president and the speaker of the house when they're really trying to pass something. >> so that means yes, you think it will? >> i think that the president and the speaker are -- can be
very persuasive when it comes to legislation like this. but each and every one of us has to look to history, look to our constituents and make the best decision we can about reforming insurance as we know it and getting some start on cost control in american health care. >> congressman, when you said that the president and the leadership can be very persuasive, the speaker can be persuasive, what have they done or said to you to try to persuade you? >> for me, it's really on the policy merits. whether we get our arms around costs. whether folks who want to keep their current insurance, get the opportunity to keep that insurance. whether real basics like banning the use of preexisting condition, banning the practice of recission where you pay for decades, potentially decades, for your health insurance. and then when you get sick, they pull it. you know, those are very important policy merits. and those are the basics of the
legislation, and we want to make sure that it's done right. >> we're almost out of time, but i'll ask you quickly, we just had this nbc news/wall street journal poll that basically said people are sick of members of congress, and if they could vote their member out, they would do so. that what's happening with health care is an example of leadership at its worst, congress at its worst. how do you respond to that? >> no legislative process should go on for 14 months. and this has gone on for 14 months. and the american people are rightfully, deeply, deeply the american people are deeply concerned, but i'll tell you what. you know, i think that this is a great job where you get up in the morning and you ask yourself, how can i make the world a slightly better place today, but if people choose to call me home, i'm going to leave this town and look forward to
welcome back. there is reportedly a mounting number of complaints by toyota owners who say their recalled vehicles still suddenly accelerate even after it fixed. the ap reports federal safety officials have he haved 105 complaints. and toyota has slipped in the new vehicle dependability study. gives ford and gm impressive marks. phil lebeau breaks it down for us. >> let's keep this in mind. this was done before the recalls exploded last year and even though toyota slipped in terms of the number of brands, in terms of the number of problems
reported by toyota owners, it actually improved last year. so, yes, they have fallen from fourth to sixth, but overall, the quality is improving. there you see porsche zooming to first. the bottom three we always get asked. land rover, suzuki and volkswagen. 3-year-old vehicle rs rated by owners. about 50,000 people answered the survey. >> thank you very much. always an interesting study. thank you. that does it for me in this hour. i'll see you back here at 2:00 p.m. eastern time. monica novotny is here filling in for contessa. we're starting with jihad jane. and it looks like the arm
twisting on capitol hill is paying off. the democrats may just be five votes away from the 216 they need to pass the bill. nancy pelosi speaks in the next hour. and we'll talk with anthony winer about that and a deeping diplomatic breach. also, we're talking to miss u.s.a. she's talk about her new project, helping to clean up the water in the dominican republic. we'll tell you all about it. so heading to the doctor
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we are covering stories coast to coast and you can almost hear the crows from districts on capitol hill. nancy pelosi moments away from speaking. and this hour, we're expecting to hear from robert gibbs in a live rose garden briefing. republicans meantime, they're threatening to do all they can to block the health care vote. jihad jane appears in court in philadelphia.
pleading not guilty. we'll tell you what happened. and far and wide, we found two kids who helped mom make a special delivery. >> the baby's coming now -- the baby's already here. >> you'll be talking about this one today. it's noon here on the east coast and in 72 hours, it could be high noon for health care. at any moment, we're expecting to hear from house speaker nancy pelosi. sources telling nbc news that democrats could be just fine votes away from the 216 needs and james clyburn, the man in charge of counting those votes, unveiling new numbers on the cost of the bill. >> this is a magnificent bill for the american people. and the news from cbo indicate that what we're doing will be